The superb researcher, humanist, and author of Descartes' Error binds the body to the spirit in an exploration of consciousness The publication of this book is an event in the making. All over the world scientists, psychologists, and philosophers are waiting to read Antonio Damasio's new theory of the nature of consciousness and the construction of the self. A renowned and revered scientist and clinician, Damasio has spent decades following amnesiacs down hospital corridors, waiting for comatose patients to awaken, and devising ingenious research using PET scans to piece together the great puzzle of consciousness. In his bestselling Descartes' Error, Damasio revealed the critical importance of emotion in the making of reason. Building on this foundation, he now shows how consciousness is created. Consciousness is the feeling of what happens-our mind noticing the body's reaction to the world and responding to that experience. Without our bodies there can be no consciousness, which is at heart a mechanism for survival that engages body, emotion, and mind in the glorious spiral of human life. A hymn to the possibilities of human existence, a magnificent work of ingenious science, a gorgeously written book, The Feeling of What Happens is already being hailed as a classic.
If I were able to nominate one individual for the Noble prize it would be Damasio...both Descartes' Error and The Feeling of What Happens are essential reading. Although they masquerade as 'popular science' they are ground-breaking classics of psychology and neuroscience. These are books to buy, keep and ponder upon. Do so, and you will be ahead of the ruck by at least a decade